North Wales Crusaders 36 - 10 Rochdale Hornets
Date published: 31 August 2021
Rochdale Hornets logo
North Wales Crusaders continued their winning streak with a 36-10 victory against Rochdale Hornets at the Stadiwm Zip World.
Matt Calland’s side started the game strongly but a red card to Shaun Robinson mid-way through the first half was too much for Hornets to overcome in Colwyn Bay.
Rangi Chase returned to the squad for the first time since breaking his arm in the reverse fixture at the Crown Oil Arena, named in the halves alongside Rob Fairclough.
Zak Baker was also named at 13 following the completion of his four-match ban.
Fuifui Moimoi was named on the bench, while Tom Ashton returned to the centres.
It was a solid start to the clash with both sides going end to end with the ball in hand and it was Hornets who took the lead on the 15th minute through Chase. The former Super League and England half-back crashed onto a short ball from Rob Fairclough, playing nine for the play, for a 0-4 lead.
However, winger Shaun Robinson was sent from the field with a red card for a high tackle on his opposite winger in Patrick Ah Van on the 24th minute.
Crusaders should have scored their first try of the afternoon on 30 minutes after Ah Van broke down the wing but the pass in support couldn’t stick. However, the hosts didn’t have to wait much longer. Alex Eckley crashed over under the sticks untouched just three minutes later thanks to a lovely pass from his hooker, converted by Tommy Johnson for a 6-4 score.
Things went from bad to worse for Hornets as the hosts crossed again just two minutes later as Johnson supported a break to go under the sticks, before the fullback added a penalty conversion for 14-4 following a break from Massam.
Crusaders crossed again moments before half-time as Ah Van dived over in the corner for a 20-4 score at the break.
Hornets started the second half better than they ended the first and came close to scoring after Josh Jordan-Roberts crashed over from a short ball from Chase, only for the pass to be ruled forward.
Crusaders, however, crossed first with centre Matt Reid scoring for 24-4 on the 46th minute.
There was a glimmer of hope for Hornets on the 52nd minute with a try. Again, Fairclough from dummy-half going short to find Cian Tyrer in space, and his kick back in field eventually found Lewis Sheridan to cross and Jordan-Roberts converted for a 24-10 score.
Hornets looked dangerous, but couldn’t turn possession into points despite the best efforts of Fairclough, who was denied a try over the line thanks to some solid defence from the home side. Crusaders extended their lead to 30-10 with a try from half-back Jordy Gibson on the 62nd minute.
Lack of discipline resulted in several penalties against Hornets as they found themselves as their own worst enemy.
The last blow of the game came through Johnson on the 78th minute. The fullback supported his half-back from the inside to slice through and converted his own try for a full-time score of 36-10, while Chase was shown a yellow by the official minutes before the full-time hooter.
Hornets: Tyrer, Ainscough, Calland, Ashton, Robinson, Chase, Fairclough, Bennion, Moores, Taira, Jordan-Roberts, Syme, Baker.
Subs: Penkywicz, Moimoi, Forster, Sheridan.
Tries: Chase (15'), Sheridan (52')
Goals: Jordan-Roberts 1/2
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